What can I do to Help my Students Achieve Their Expected Outcomes?
Embark on an Inclusive Practice journey
…in your delivery
• Check your materials are accessible. On average, we may have between 60% – 80% of our student cohort commuting (depending on Level, Programme). By recording your lectures either through Panopto or just an audio recording and placing it on Studynet/ canvas you allow all students the ability to go through the lecture in their own pace at their
• You can use an online tool that can allow the introverted or shy students to have a voice in class – Mentimeter.com is the easiest to use that I have found. It allows students to participate to questions from their phones and is free. You may choose to include 2 or 3 questions as part of your lecture slides to measure the engagement and learning in the room.
• Active Learning – studies have shown evidence that active learning within a tutorial
…in group work
• Students tend to congregate with people that are like them, especially in unfamiliar social settings. Therefore, in the first few weeks of the module you can allow them to participate in their comfort zone groups but then explain the importance of learning from and with others and let them know in advance you will mix up the groups in the tutorial as the week’s
• Give students the time and space to get to know each other, you can have an activity in class where either in pairs or small groups students must find 5 things they have in common with the people they are sitting with in their new mixed groups.
• Encourage compassionate pedagogic behaviours (Theo gilbert UH) in group work – by having students think about
o What can I contribute to others learning in the classroom and in our upcoming group assessment?
o What would I like others to contribute to my learning in the classroom and the upcoming group assessment?
…in your assessment
• You can ask a sample of your students if they are clear on what is required by reading the assignment brief only – if there is a large variation between what students understand is required of them you may want to give additional guidance on Canvas.
• Identify CASE material and/or workshops that align with your assessments and promote them in your lecture slides 2-3 weeks before deadline dates. CASE
• You can also ask for CASE to provide an embedded session in the context of your assessment, especially if it is heavily weighted 3-4 weeks before the deadline.
• Another barrier our BME students may face is not being aware or familiar with all the Learning Resources available. You can ask Library and Computing services to deliver an embedded session to raise awareness of the Learning Resources available and how they can be used in the context of your assessments.
• Check that all information regarding the assessment is present in the module guide at the beginning of the module.
• Try and cover content required for assessments at least 2 weeks before the assessment deadline giving all students ample time. If this is not possible, please notify the students early enough so they can plan accordingly.
• A larger proportion of BME students are first in the family to go the University therefore, it is helpful to inform students about what they can expect in terms of attempting the assessments such as; how long they should give themselves, good starting points to start their research such as databases to use or books to read. You can also ask previous students to reinforce this message by sharing their own experiences.
• Dedicate a tutorial/seminar for allowing students in mixed ability groups (under your facilitation) the opportunity to discuss the assessment brief and what they understand is required. This is an element of inclusive assessment, (which has a positive impact on BME attainment) it allows for any misunderstandings to be corrected.
• There are varying routes into Higher Education and students may have come from a nontraditional educational context with little experience in the assessment type that is being proposed. Research shows us this can have an impact on Academic confidence in undertaking an assessment. A great way to ensure all students start from a level playing field of confidence is to include a formative assessment that is constructively aligned with the summative assessment (especially at Level 4,5)
• A key component of inclusive teaching is to ensure your curricula materials are diverse and reflective of the student cohort and/or the global profession. You can do this by reviewing case studies, examples used, reading lists – is there anything in my materials that my BME student cohort may see as non-reflective of a diverse environment?
• If you are unsure where to find more representative materials/case studies you can ask your students to bring in their own knowledge and experiences to the class, for example if we are talking about a business in whatever function we can ask them to choose a business they have had a good customer experience with or an SME they have been a customer of in the last 6 months. You may even ask their favourite food which they can then identify the company/business/SME that produces that food.
• For Business subjects, there are several inspiring Role models in senior positions that can be included in your slides. You can access the top 100 here you can do this for all other students from protected characteristics also.
• Lastly, we must remember that assessment is the end-point, if learning doesn’t occur in an equitable way before that point a student may already be disadvantaged.
…in your review and evaluation
• As an institution, we have access to value added data. Our current institutional focus is to
ensure the percentage of students attaining a good degree meets what is expected based
on prior entry qualifications, subject of study and protected characteristics. You can discuss
your own value added data with your programme leader.
• BME students from some programmes within the business school are achieving as
expected and above expectation. Whilst, I know ‘one size does not fit all’ it might be good to
review what other programmes are doing and see if there is anything that can be used in
• It may be good to produce your own data and look at the grade differences on your own
modules/programmes between BME and White students and keep track of any trends in
line with University data, sector data, and value added data – as you may have a better
understanding of why this might be.
• You can use UPRE01 to give out a questionnaire to your students and better understand
their experiences on your course and at university in general. You may find differences by
ethnicity which you can then address specifically. Please remember all data must be
anonymised and only used in accordance with UPRE01 guidelines.
• Set aside time within one of your sessions to receive open feedback and discussion of the
module from all students. What went well? What can be improved? Ensure that a representative sample of students are present and contribute. You might want use something like Padlet.com to allow all students to put something up.
…in your awareness
• Attend conferences where good practice is being shared in relation to BME students and Non-traditional students as a whole you can also visit HERAG, Widening Participation to view work that is already underway by various institutions in this area.
• Be aware of the different cultures and cultural observances by updating your office outlook so you can be aware of various observances such as Yom Kippur, Ramadan, and Diwali
and share that awareness with your students.
• As we know the gap is largest for BME students born and raised in the UK, you can take some time to hear the experiences of BME individuals growing up in the UK
• You can also review the race equality issues within the profession the students are studying. There are plenty of issues of racism, harassment and bullying in the work place that help bring context to issues of race and equality.
…in your personal interactions
• By speaking with your BME students find out about their background, culture where they’re from their ambitions and most importantly their names. You can go to Pronouncenames.com to help with non-traditional names.
• You already have high expectations of all your students but it is helpful to reinforce this message to your BME students – by letting them know you personally feel they can do well on your course. This is because some early research at UEL and UH has shown that BME students can have lower Academic confidence 6 weeks after starting their course than their white counterparts.
• We know BME students are less likely to visit support and/or engage with their lecturer, specifically for our BME males. Therefore, if time permits instead of having open office hours you and tutors on your module can arrange to proactively book appointments to see students that are not attending your office hours.
• Whilst it isn’t your responsibility to provide support in every area you can sign post the student to the following services. In some cases, it might be useful to actually call, email or walk with the student to that service.
• If a student is experiencing mental health issues / or is in a situation you feel could lead to a mental health crisis you can forward to our UG Pastoral care and Academic Support Lead
Ann Campbell email@example.com Ext 4869 or If severe contact Student Wellbeing: firstname.lastname@example.org Tel +44 (0)1707 284453 (but please cc or notify Ann)
• If a student has academic needs above and beyond what you can advise them on in the time you have, you can direct them to the CASE workshop calendar. Ask the student which workshop they can attend based on their timetable. You may wish to forward them a document they may need (e.g. essay writing guide, Harvard referencing guide, numeracy support) also It may help to have the link below as a shortcut on your desktop for quick access. http://www.studynet1.herts.ac.uk/ptl/common/asu.nsf/Homepage?
ReadForm – CASE website Email: email@example.com
• If the student is not engaging in the appropriate academic behaviours (lack of attendance, late submissions or other disengaged behaviour) you can forward them onto the Student Development Team by emailing firstname.lastname@example.org Ext 7745
• For all other enquiries HBS Info point can be accessed directly by the student. For example; (timetabling queries, transcript and results information, requesting EVS equipment, finding staff, who is my programme Leader? All orientation related queries) email@example.com
• If you are a Year Tutor, Personal Tutor you can ask the following open ended nonjudgemental questions in your interactions;
o How are you finding the course? (You may need to use appreciative inquiry to ask
what has been going well? before you ask what has been challenging?)
o What skills would you like to gain whilst at university? (You can remind them of the top ten skills employers most look for in Graduates.)
o You can also ask what they the least confident are in and what actions do they think they can take to address that.
o Have you thought about what profession you would like to go into? (if they are unsure the first action point is for them to search, talk to people find out what they would like to do) they can go to;
▪ Indeed.co.uk to see job descriptions and see what type of skills are essential and desired.
▪ glassdoor.co.uk to see reviews of what is it’s like to work at companies in their industry
o If they are sure you can ask some in depth questions about the profession to see if they really understand the role. For example Investment banking or Finance (which department will you work in (Mergers and Acquisitions, Asset management, Operations, Front office, Back office, Compliance and Risk?)- This is to raise their awareness that they have to be more specific.
o What obstacles do you think can get in the way of your goals? (then let them think of ways they can reduce the impact of those obstacles/challenges)
o What academic skills do you feel you will most need to develop? (then signpost them to where to develop them)
o Is there anything I can do to help you at the moment? What is important is not to judge the student. Especially on how they speak, dress or mannerisms. Allow them an open space to express their thoughts and raise their awareness of themselves and where they would like to go. Your role is to inform them of what they may need to do to get there. To inform their decision making, leveraging your relationship and experience. This is important specifically for those from the BME community who can develop what’s known as Stereotype threat and then further disengage from further interactions.
Hertfordshire Business School 2017 ©